Alignment of Planned Transportation Investments with Climate and Equity Goals
Principal Investigator/Author: Brian Taylor
Contractor: University of California, Los Angeles
Contract number: 21RD008
Project Status: Active
Relevant CARB programs: Sustainable Communities & Climate Protection Program, Research Planning
Topic areas: Sustainable Communities, Research & Sustainable Communities, Sustainable Community Strategies (SCS), Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) Reduction & Climate Goals, Land Use & Transportation Research
The project will assess the decision-making process and the project performance evaluation methods used by Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPO) staff, Boards, and community advocates for the selection and evaluation of Sustainable Communities Strategies (SCS) and projects in Regional Transportation Plans (RTP). The goal is to develop a deep understanding of how MPOs select the projects that appear in their RTPs project list and SCS implementation. The project will also examine how selection processes has evolved over time and identify how project performance is tracked after implementation. The project results will help to inform future Senate Bill (SB) 150 Reports. The results will also help to inform future attempts to align regional and local plan-making and project selection with California climate and equity goals.
The researchers will determine the degree to which MPO staff and Board members take ownership of SB 375 targets and other state goals and objectives. Furthermore, the researchers will explore how the state and/or MPOs could develop project evaluation and selection methods that will motivate MPOs and subregional governments to select projects that best advance the state’s climate goals. Through literature reviews and in-depth interviews, the researchers will identify the data, criteria, and methods needed to advance the state’s goals and objectives. Existing literature and consultation with CARB and other relevant stakeholders will also inform updates to the project’s overarching research objectives to understand how MPOs presently screen, negotiate, and select projects in fiscally constrained transportation plans.
Keywords: sustainable community strategies (SCS); transportation and land use; SB 375; equitable climate policy; evaluation methods